TCL TV Freezing: Why It Happens and How to Fix It Quickly

glitches on TCL TV

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What To Know

  • TCL TVs freezing or glitching can be attributed to software or hardware problems, with symptoms including screen flickering and colorful stripe displays.
  • Common solutions include disabling the Auto Brightness Adjustment feature, ensuring a strong internet connection, and checking the integrity of HDMI connections and cables.
  • If standard troubleshooting doesn’t help, consider performing a soft or factory reset, and, as a last resort, contact TCL customer support for assistance.

Is your TCL TV constantly freezing?

You’re not the only one facing this issue.

Even newer TCL TVs can experience glitches.

Let’s explore the reasons behind the TCL freezing issue and find quickly effective fixes.


It’s not uncommon for TCL TVs (and all TVs for that matter) to experience infrequent errors that lead to freezing or glitching. However, when these glitches become persistent, they may point to software or hardware problems. 

A few symptoms of your TV freezing or glitching include: 

  • The TV screen is stuck at one scene while playing a video.
  • The TV screen has a flickering effect while freezing.
  • The images on-screen might also fluctuate while freezing.
  • The TV screen displays colorful stripes. (This usually happens when a TV broadcasting channel has a glitch or has lost connection.)
  • The TV screen has a noisy pixelated background (see the image at the beginning of this article as an example).

If your TCL TV is exhibiting any of the above symptoms, proceed to the next section to learn why they happen and how to resolve them.

Reasons and Possible Solutions

There are several reasons why your TCL TV may be flickering, depending on which settings you have enabled, your network connection strength, and the hardware’s condition. 

Let’s go over a few ways you can unfreeze your TCL TV. 

Auto Brightness Adjustment Feature Is Enabled

TCL TVs have an auto brightness adjustment feature (frequently labeled ECO Mode or Energy Saver). This nifty function saves the TV’s power consumption by ensuring the screen isn’t brighter than necessary. 

In some cases, this function may make your TV screen appear to be flickering or freezing. So, it’s best to disable Eco Mode and Energy Saver altogether and see if that helps. 

The below guides are captured on my TCL Google TV.

Turn Off ECO Mode

Step 1: Press the TV remote’s Settings button and go to Settings

highlight settings button on TCL TV remote

Step 2: Head to Display & Sound, followed by Picture

highlight Picture in Display & Sound section

Step 3: Open the Advanced Settings, then navigate to Brightness Settings

highlight Brightness Settings in Advanced Settings section

Step 4: Select Dynamic Brightness and adjust it from ECO to Off

turn off Dynamic Brightness

Turn Off Energy Saver

Step 1: Hit the Settings key on your TV remote and then select Settings

Step 2: Navigate to System, before clicking on Power & Energy

highlight Power & Energy in System section

Step 3: Go to Energy Saver and open Turn Off Display. Then, turn this function Off

turn off the Turn Off Display option

Full TV App Cache

Your TV’s apps all have a cache memory which, when full, can cause your TV to buffer and freeze

So, it’s best to clear your TV’s app cache regularly to ensure that it won’t prevent your TV software from functioning properly and at full speed. 

Follow the steps below to clear a TCL TV’s app cache (The guide is performed on a TCL Google TV).

Step 1: After selecting your remote’s Settings key, navigate to Settings on-screen. 

Step 2: Go to Apps and select See All Apps

select See All Apps option

Step 3: Click on the app that’s frequently freezing before heading to Clear Cache

select Clear Cache

Step 4: Click on OK to clear the app’s cache. 

click OK to clear cache

Bad Internet Connection

Content on streaming platforms and Youtube videos need a high bandwidth to play smoothly. So, if your network connection is slow or unstable, it may cause the videos to randomly stop and load. 

As shown in the example image below, buffering YouTube videos frequently display a spinning loading icon in the middle of the screen. 

buffering video on TCL TV

The only way to prevent network issues from freezing videos is by ensuring your TV is connected to a strong and stable internet connection. 

Follow the steps below to verify your TV’s network speed. 

Step 1: Launch a web browser on your TCL TV

Google home screen on TCL TV

Step 2: Navigate to a free online speed test tool, like

Step 3: Use your remote to click on Start Speed Test to begin testing your TV’s internet speed. 

select Start Speed Test on TCL TV

Step 4: Once the speed test is complete, take note of your network’s Download Speed

highlight Download Speed result on TCL TV

You can see from the example image above that my TV internet’s download speed is 39.45 Mbps, which indicates the network is strong. 

Refer to the table below to see the download speed requirements for watching a streaming channel or YouTube video on your TCL TV. 

Video Resolution Recommended download speed
8K (4320p) 100 Mbps
4K (2160p) 20 Mbps
HD 1080p 5 Mbps
HD 720p 2.5 Mbps
SD 480p 0.7 Mbps
SD 240p < 0.5 Mbps
SD 144p < 0.5 Mbps

Weak Satellite/Antenna Signal

Weak satellite signals or a bad antenna connection can cause your TCL TV to suddenly display a colorful striped screen if it loses its connection to a broadcasting channel. This is likely to happen if your area has experienced severe wind or weather events that have knocked your satellite dish or antenna out of place. 

Check that your satellite dish or antenna is correctly positioned and play around with its orientation to see if that improves the signal. 

You may also want to ensure your antenna’s cable is securely plugged into your TCL TV’s input port. 

Check out this article 10+ Simple Ways to Boost TV Antenna Signal Reception (Indoor & Outdoor) for more tips and tricks on how to boost your TV’s antenna signal. 

Bad Input Source or HDMI Cable

Connecting a source device (e.g. game console, laptop, streaming stick) to your TCL TV with an HDMI cable should be a piece of cake, but problems can arise if either the external device or cable is damaged. 

Broken or corrupted source devices or HDMI cables can prevent your TV from receiving a steady video signal, resulting in glitching and freezing. 

First, check that your input video source is in good condition. If you’re connecting a laptop to your TV, ensure the video is playing smoothly on the laptop as there may be a problem with the video rather than the connection. 

Old source devices can malfunction, so if you’ve had your streaming stick or game console for several years, it may be in need of replacement. 

You can also try connecting your source device to another TV to see if it works properly. If it does, then there may be a problem with your HDMI cable

So, try using another high-quality HDMI cable with your setup. If your TV displays the source device flawlessly, then you’ve found your culprit.

Otherwise, there may be a problem with your TV’s HDMI port. So, connect your HDMI cable and source device to another HDMI port. 

Read this article Why Is My TV HDMI Port Not Working? for more information about what to do if your TV’s HDMI port is on the fritz. 

Broken Hardware Inside the TV

Individual hardware components inside your TV may have broken, interrupting your TV display’s function. 

Damaged electronic boards can prevent your TV from smoothly displaying images and make it freeze. 

Unfortunately, there isn’t a reliable way to fix this at home, so it’s recommended to contact TCL customer support or find a skilled technician to fix it for you. 

Soft Reset or Factory Reset

Soft resetting and factory resetting your TV should be the latest resort once you’ve tried all of the above solutions. Bugs in the software can disrupt your TV’s display and cause it to freeze and glitch. Resetting your TV may resolve these issues. 

Soft Reset

Step 1: Remove your TV’s power cable from the wall outlet. 

Step 2: Wait 60 seconds

Step 3: Long-press the TV’s Power button on its control panel for 30 seconds to drain any residual power. 

Step 4: Plug the TV back into the wall outlet and turn it on. 

Factory Reset

Warning: Factory resetting smart TVs will uninstall all of their apps and delete any custom data.

This process will differ depending on which OS system your TCL TV has. 

Use the Reset Button (for TCL Roku TVs)

Step 1: Find your TCL Roku TV’s RESET pinhole on the side of your TV. 

Step 2: Enter a SIM card ejector or toothpick into the hole and press the button for around 12 seconds or until the TV LED indicator light dims.

Step 3: Stop pressing the button and turn your TV on to begin setting it up from scratch. 

Use Factory Reset Settings

Other TCL OSes must be factory reset via their settings. 

Let’s learn how!

Android TV

Step 1: Click the remote’s Settings key. 

Step 2: Navigate to More Settings

Step 3: Go to Device Preference

Step 4: Head to Reset

Step 5: In the pop-up window, click on Factory Data Reset

Step 6: Choose to Erase Everything

Step 7: Once you’ve entered the requested PIN, select OK

Step 8: Wait for your TV to restart before setting it up. 

Google TV

Step 1: Press the Settings key on your TV remote and open Settings

Step 2: Find and open System

Step 3: Click on About

Step 4: Head to Reset

Step 5: Go to Factory Reset

click on Reset followed by Factory Reset

Contact TCL Customer Service (Best When the Warranty Is Still Valid)

No one knows these TVs better than TCL, so don’t hesitate to reach out to them with any additional questions if our troubleshooting tips haven’t resolved your problem. 

Head to the official TCL support website to see answers to commonly asked questions or to contact a TCL customer care agent by phone or email. 

Good luck! 

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